April 29, 2016

Fire doused at Biomax after a 40-hour battle

Fire doused at Biomax after a 40-hour battle:

"Though the flames were extinguished in the evening, smoke is still billowing out from the debris. We have to be careful for the next 24 hours.



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The bio diesel tanks fire


A couple of pictures of the bio diesel facility tank farm fire in Andhra Pradesh.


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April 27, 2016

Biodiesel Magazine - The Latest News and Data About Biodiesel Production

With news reports coming in of a major fire in a bio diesel facility in Andhra Pradesh, it is relevant to mention the importance of process safety in such facilities. Read an article about this in this link:

Biodiesel Magazine - The Latest News and Data About Biodiesel Production



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April 21, 2016

Blast in petrochemical plant in Mexico kills 3

Read about an explosion in a petrochemical plant in Mexico that has killed 3 persons in this link.

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Quick intervention helps avert major explosion as LPG tanker overturns

Quick intervention helps avert major explosion as LPG tanker overturns:

Soon, a fire broke out in a hotel located about 200 metres away from the accident spot, following fluctuation in power supply. A fire tender reached the spot at 12.30 a.m. and began pouring water over



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The dangers of contact cleaners


Read about the dangers of contact cleaners that are used ubiquitously in the CPI in the safety bulletin in this link
Train your maintenance and operation personnel about the hazards involved with such cleaners.


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April 18, 2016

How we prevent another West ammonium nitrate explosion: Q

How we prevent another West ammonium nitrate explosion: Q: In January, the Tribune-Herald published the U.S. Chemical Safety Board’s findings and recommendations regarding storage of fertilizer-grade ammonium nitrate after a 2½-year study of the fire at and explosion of the West Fertilizer Company. The blast left 15 people dead (12 of them first responders) and more than 260 injured; it destroyed or seriously damaged homes, schools and a nursing home — more than 150 buildings in all — in West, population 2,800. Before the board’s formal report to the public (but after privately reporting to family members of the dead), Trib opinion editor Bill Whitaker and veteran staff writer J.B. Smith sat down to discuss the findings with Chemical Safety Board Chairwoman Vanessa Sutherland and lead investigator Johnnie Banks. They discussed the importance of construction materials in facilities housing ammonium nitrate; how the tragedy of West influenced Texas firefighters in a potentially deadly ammonium nitrate fire a year later; and whether the fertilizer industry is doing enough to stress safety.

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April 17, 2016

Fire in petrochemical plant kills 12

News reports coming in of a fire in Jubail United Petrochemical Plant in Saudi Arabia, during maintenance, which has killed 12 people and injured others. 3 Indians are reported to be among those killed. I know that these companies follow very good safety management systems and this serves as a reminder about how careful we must be.

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April 15, 2016

The use of Residual current circuit breakers

The use of 30 milliampere RCDs has been commonplace.RCDs used to be called ELCBs – earth leakage circuit breakers.
Safety switches monitor the leakage of electrical current to earth through faulty appliances or incorrect wiring and disconnect the power quickly.
A safety switch can cut off power in 30 milliseconds - a 30th of a heart beat.
If a fault occurs in an appliance or wiring causing current to flow to earth - perhaps through a person - the switch's earth leakage sensor responds to the imbalance of current and cuts the power.
However, the passage of 30mA through a person, even for only 30 milliseconds, may be painful. Unfortunately, for the RCD to work when a person is involved, this has to happen! If the person affected is on a ladder or in a similar elevated situation this shock may cause a fall, which could lead to further injuries!
Over the years the mining and quarrying industry has become familiar with, and in some cases, over-dependent, on these devices. It appears as if people are relying purely on the RCD to protect them rather than ensuring that the equipment is being used correctly. One incident occurred recently where a contractor using a portable device which had no "Test or Tag" label stated emphatically that it was not necessary as the outlet he was using was protected by a 30mA RCD! There have been several reported incidents where portable appliances and/or their power leads have been subject to excessive moisture and the operator felt a tingle. Fortunately the RCD worked and no long-term ill effects occurred.
An RCD is an electro-mechanical device that is inherently extremely reliable, however, they can fail and in this case the tingle may become more serious!
An RCD is there to isolate faulty electrical items; the primary barrier to prevent inadvertent contact with dangerous electrical conductors is the integrity of the insulation.
The users of portable electrical appliances and/or electrical leads must ensure that they are not subject to mechanical abuse or the ingress of water. Testing and tagging should weed out damaged items but will not eliminate misuse particularly if moisture is present. The user has the primary responsibility and obligation to visually check and use portable appliances in a safe manner.
NB: An RCD will not provide protection against a live to neutral fault!

Courtesy: Queensland department of mines:




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April 7, 2016

http://www.delawareonline.com/story/money/2016/04/01/dupont-closing-texas-plant-where-4-died/82512270/

 http://www.delawareonline.com/story/money/2016/04/01/dupont-closing-texas-plant-where-4-died/82512270/


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Emergency Preparedness and Response | Safety and Health Guides - Critical Incident Stress Guide

When I investigate fatal accidents in chemical industries, I often see the witnesses are traumatized due to the horrific nature of the incident and the persons who are gravely injured or killed may be their colleague.

OSHA has published a critical incident stress guide which must be made part of every organisations emergency response recovery phase. You can read it in the link given below:

Emergency Preparedness and Response | Safety and Health Guides - Critical Incident Stress Guide


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April 6, 2016

Poignant message!

 




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April 4, 2016